Although it may be hard to believe, spring semester—yes, spring—is well underway. Even with polar vortices (how horrifying when that word has to be plural!) bearing down upon us, campus is beautiful and busy.
But nothing stops Ohio State; spring, summer, autumn, winter, arts and sciences students and faculty continue to make news, which is being heard around the world. No matter where you go—there we are.
Arts and sciences is home to Ohio State’s marching band, aka, The Best Damn Band in the Land (TBDBITL)—known for pushing the envelope for performance, precision and innovation. Last autumn, TBDBITL set a new standard revolutionizing performance by using the iPad to learn complicated formations quickly. Their ingenuity went viral, celebrated in videos viewed by millions and featured in a new iPad commercial.
Our undergraduate students continue to amaze me with their versatility in and outside the classroom. Tori Boggs, a second year industrial design, Honors Collegium student and nine-time world jump-rope champion, was featured last Thursday (1/23) on The Ellen DeGeneres Show. In December, the university produced a video featuring Boggs that went viral; it has been viewed nearly a million times.
I continue to be impressed by the diversity of our programs that provide incomparable learning opportunities for our students. The two-year Advanced Chinese Language and Culture (Flagship) MA Program (Department of East Asian Languages and Literatures) has an exceptional track record of preparing Americans to successfully work in China-related careers. In early January, all six of its current students—Mac Carr, Briun Greene, Tina Li, Mack Lorden, Nick Pochedly, and Joel Poncz—got an unexpected working vacation when China’s international consumer electronics giant, Haier Corporation, flew them to Las Vegas to advise them on marketing to American consumers at the Consumers Electronics Show.
Professor of Astronomy and Physics Christopher Hirata, who joined us last semester, has been making news and winning major awards since the age of 13 when he was the youngest American to win the International Physics Olympiad. The most recent: the premier award for young astronomers, the Helen B. Warner Prize for observational or theoretical research from the American Astronomical Society, for “remarkable work on cosmological recombination, structure formation, and dark energy and cosmic acceleration; and the extraordinary depth of understanding he brings to these subjects, which is facilitating the next generation of important cosmological experiments.”
I would say the year is off to a blazing-hot start, polar vortices or not.